I’m thinking maybe I jumped the gun with the speaking. I managed to tell my tutor that my son had had his foot cut off (he’d had the cast for his broken foot cut off).
Steve recommended I wait until I get to around 10k known words when I started this journey in January, so I’m going to give it another month or two. I’m happy I tried though as now I have a better idea of what I need to work on, and I found a wonderful tutor in Katy.
I still find TV shows to be the most enjoyable French learning activity. Here are my favourite shows so far. I’m always looking for a new show, so please let me know if you’ve seen something awesome recently!
Yes, definitely a good strategy for keeping the motivation high.
Thanks for sharing!
I love “Aqui No Hay Quien Viva” in Spanish. And there’s also a
French equivalent: “Faites Comme Chez Vous.”
But, probably that’s for later when you have reached a B2/C1 level
in French and are less dependent on subtitles.
I have been watching top chef France. though I haven’t found it with subtitles, it has been great practice. I have been importing recipes from the show.
Thanks for the Netflix tips, my favourite show so far is Dix Pour Cent. I hope your son has a speedy recovery with the foot!
I binged ‘family business’ in a day or two, really funny, really easy to watch and season 2 is coming out in September!
Do you read the script with lingq first then watch the episode or the other way around first watch it then read it and watch it one more time?
with me reading alone in a foreign language reinforces wrong pronunciation that’s what I notice whenever I try to read something in German because of that sub-vocalization thing.
I am almost finished with my academic exams on August 10 so after that I will be upgrading my membership and planning on watching Dark and studying its scripts on lingq.
Podcasts are also an excellent language learning resource.
Some of my favorite podcasts (for intermediate
learners) in French are:
- Katy’s podcast
- French Voices
- Inner French
- Français Authentique
And for “News” aficionados:
" Journal en Français Facile (RFI - Radio France Internationale)
All these podcasts can be found in the LingQ library!
And last, but not least the excellent website https://www.podcastfrancaisfacile.com/
with “a lot of” mini dialogs in French (audio and scripts).
Je souhaite une excellente journée
Well, I lived and studied in France, so I don’t usually need subtitles in French (of course, it’s different for some literary works).
For other languages it depends on my language level (beginner or intermediate):
- At an intermediate level, for example in Spanish at the moment, my strategy is as follows:
- I listen first (no text / no subtitles)
- Then I read the text / the subtitles and maybe mark some phrases / collocations (word groups) in LingQ
- Finally I listen several times (no text / no subtitles) in LingQ, on YT and especially on my MP3 player
At this language level, it’s important for me to get used to the speed of native speakers. Therefore, I sometimes increase the running speed of audio / audio-video resources form 1x to 1.5x, too.
- At a beginner level (in my case in Portuguese and Japanese at the moment) my strategy is a bit different:
- I read first short texts / mini dialogs / subtitles and mark some phrases / collocations in LingQ
- Then I listen again without reading anything.
If that’s still too difficult I listen once more while reading.
- Finally I listen several times without any textual support.
This is supplemented by using at least “one” of the following text / audio / AV resources on a daily basis:
- Audio flash cards (esp. in Japanese)
- SRSes like Anki and Memrise
- Smartphone apps with mini dialogs / phrasebooks
- Translation audio exercises à la “50Languages”
- Small grammar and writing (text / audio / video) exercises on Busuu
- Assimil Dialogs (often just listening without reading anything)
- Doing some LingQ reviews
- Reading texts (comics, newspaper / Wikipedia articles, graded readers, blog posts, etc.), esp. in Spanish (not so much in Portuguese and Japanese), without using any audio
- Following the news (without any textual support), esp. in Spanish. But in the last four weeks I also imported Spanish news (“Telediario”) into LingQ to learn and review the vocabulary explicitly.
In sum: I combine incidental and intentional language development strategies, that is: implicit acquisition and explicit learning, because I’m not convinced of an incidental-implicit language acquisition-only approach (btw, this is also a position in the current literature on SLA).
In this context, the main thing is to keep it interesting and not to bore me to death.
At the same time I’m “not” a fan of “fun” (everything should be easy, super easy, super super easy, etc.) learning. Instead, the language development experience should be challenging, interesting and stimulating.
In other words: If this experience is fun and comfortable it’s a nice-to-have, but not a must-have. Getting comfortable with the uncomfortable is much more important in this context (for me) because if someone is addicted to fun and comfort (= the avoidance of pain), he or she might give up rather sooner than later (see in general, for example:
The Comfort Zone | Psychology Today).
In short, the addiction to fun and comfort undermines your perseverance!
Have a nice day
If you can get a French VPN or you can find them on Netflix the French language nature documentaries are great for a beginner, especially the BBC and National Geographic ones. They are narrated slowly and clearly so there aren’t a huge amount of words - about 2-3,000words per hour of TV. They’re very visual, and the target audience are families so the vocabulary is easy. They’re free to watch online if the site believes you are in France.
France 5 and Arte TV have the best ones.
Yes, I agree. Arte has really high quality documentaries.
You can find them on Youtube, too. See “Arte - Découvertes” (but the level is rather “upper intermediate”): ARTE Découverte - YouTube
From time to time I like to watch old series on Netflix in French, English or Italian. I use this technique to refresh my skills and it works perfectly. It also helps me a lot with the pronunciation.
Therefore I totally recommend your Approach.
Merci! For me, French has become a real challenge, I don’t know why. Probably because of the speed of speech. But this is such a beautiful language, so that no tests scare me.